Thursday, December 8, 2011

They call it Social Networking!

Guess I would be that one primitive figures who still cling on to texting and emails. The new era of social networking, is way too difficult for me to catch up. Face book being one of the most used ones. I have no complaints against the same and in fact like most of the features offered by the website. It was really amazing that I could catch up with some of my long lost friends, classmates. Being away from home you get to see the glimpses of what your dear ones are up to.

My friends list is too large coz of the big volume of people who I know. The initial irritation were updates from applications like Farmville, Café world, but they seem silly these days. Folks have started posting all their daily chores in FB. “At starbucks enjoying coffee with Mr B”. I know that boss, I just saw you walk by and get down for a coffee – and why that has to be posted and rejoiced in FB is still a big question. Moreover you see people coming and liking the status. I would suggest FB come up with a “I Hate” status.

Recent incident, the tornado that hit The US, we were anxious about our friends living in bay areas. My friends out there were asked to vacate before the waves hit the shores. I could see most of them update the FB on status between the busy evacuation. I felt myself worrying and sweating about it was useless. And the comments that get posted for every status update is un-imaginable.

People get angry, frustrated due to any random incident. The feelings you go through are very personal which you might refrain from sharing or just speak out to your close ones. Happen to see a lot of such posts these days. I am not sure what is the intent behind sharing it to network space. Either to make the world aware that you are bold enough to express your feelings, or just to make the other person undergo the torture of reading it. There are folks who like the status and even comment on it – “truly said”, “fact of life”. Many a time, it get to tip where I would just go and tell folks. Later thinking over it, I realize that it is better to remain mum than earn their hatred.

I know speaking over the blog is not helping any, but serves to express myself. Happy for the fact that my whole friends list have not turned out to react the same way. Still have that flock of people with whom this random topic of discussion comes up. Technology is a boon, but too much of it is an over head!!

To all my friends, please don’t count this post offensive. I still love you all!

*** FB – Face Book

Monday, August 1, 2011

Coffee time!!

Coffee time. Agree to the fact that coffee beans are one of the most tastiest discoveries of mankind. When I was a kid used to wonder why Nescafe adds used to be so expressive and odd, though I loved the theme song. Now I can speak about it. The aroma of coffee enlightens your taste buds and all that annoys you is just blown off your mind.

I never remember one instance during my college days when I had coffee. Most of the so called break-time was spend chatting and roaming around. Since my footsteps found their way to the corporate world, I could realize how important and evident the coffee break was. At Bangalore, it used to be Café Coffee Day – everyone’s favorite coffee station. I bet coffee costs at least 10 time more than the normal ones you get in the cafeteria or the ones you can just make yourself. Still you find a flock of folks camping around the place waiting for their much awaited cup of relief. Since I am in foreign land – the place is different though the trend is all the same – Starbucks!!

Everyone have their own stories to share for ones love towards coffee. For some it is more than an addiction, where coffee finds its place among the most necessary elements of life. The coffee cup is refilled each time they walk by the shop. I swear there are folks for whom coffee and its taste really doesn’t matter – they should be looking forward for sometime outside work. I don’t blame them as I fit into the same at times. Here goes my justifications for a coffee break. Mostly it is to accompany colleagues and get some room for quality chit-chat. There can be millions of topics to discussed over coffee, which changes with the crowd. Most extensive topics being discussion around work, people and the chores - Nothing worth is being spoken or exchanged, sheer cribbing and complaints which are supposed to ease out the work load. Managers discussing how to make people work more or to snatch more projects from the client side. Some may look serious and hang around with the intention of hitting that complicated design or idea which can make the whole system work. Another important batch discussing all big money and strategies.

You may miss an important meeting or appointment. But when it strikes 4 in the evening, there forms a never ending thread at the coffee place. I have always found this job @ coffee shop very interesting. You get to see and talk to a large crowd daily, who will value you for that cup of coffee you brew for them. A bunch of delight that makes a person’s day!

Friday, March 18, 2011

A Kind Act

It is true to a greater extend that people react different to situations. That is not what I actually meant, - it is how every individual act to a particular situation. I know it is wrong imposing my thoughts on anyone, but this one will win an exclusion- I swear after you read it.

After office hours, I rushed to the bus stop down stairs. I could see the bus approaching when I was struggling to get out of the double door exit. This was the last Express bus to my place for the day and hence my last straw to cling to. As the name suggests, it is really an express – takes some 8 odd minutes to my apartments. I had the bus pass with me and went near the counter to swipe it for the ride. Guess what!.. I see it declined. Tried the same exercise of pushing the ticket again and again, but in vein. The bus has already started moving, almost touching the freeway and was impossible to get off the vehicle. I asked him (the driver) how much it cost for the a single ride. He told me some 2.40$. And now where is the money coming from?? I know I carry less cash with me, and whatever I have is usually spend in the vending machines. I told him, “Give me little time, I will get you the money”. The driver gave me a pale look and nodded.

I moved to the very next seat and started frantically looking for the money. I realized for the 100th time that the pouches in my bag are really messed up. It had all those useful and petty. Bills, my wallet, the iPod, some 10 pens – of which most never worked, house keys, lip gloss, sanitizer and all possible crap. I would have appeared a lunatic to the crowd, desperately looking out for the coins. I knew that a considerable part of the audience were those Indian people who get down at my same stop. Even saw familiar faces, but to whom I have not spoken much. At last I could find out a 20$ note from my wallet. I knew there is no other way left out, but to sacrifice the piece of money than undergo any more embarrassment. Suddenly that 20$ seemed to be a big money for me, and it poked my guilt for not keeping the change.

I got up from the seat and was moving towards the counter – heard someone call me from behind. An old lady, she was an American who was seated near to mine. She was a silent spectator to all the chaos I have created. She called me back and asked me not to give the money I had for the ticket. In place she gave me her bus pass, and asked me to swipe it. More than being reactive, I was puzzled. I was not sure what to do as this was the most unexpected one. I kindly refused, and she told me “Kid there are lot of things you can use your money for, but this bus ticket is not worth it”. I went to swipe the pass and the bus driver gave me grumpy look for taking all the time. I returned the pass and thanked her. I knew it was much more than what I told her, she saved me from the huge embarrassment I could have suffered. I looked around and could see lots of heads slip down in shame, for being insensitive and inhuman. I knew I would have helped out anyone in such a situation. Was really happy to meet this person – her name was Stacy, and was so impressed by what she did. The little time I spend in the bus, we spoke about work and our families. My stop reached and waved bye to her as I got down.

Walking back home, I was just thinking about the whole incident. It was sad to find that people really look forward for a reason to help each other. If you have no business with that person who is in trouble, you make yourself invisible. In spite of all that happened, I felt light meeting a good person. This reminded me the whole world has not yet turned bad.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Nature's Bliss

Even though time shows 4:40PM in my laptop clock – I am still living the morning hour. Eyes are closing and opening at the frequency of the butterfly flicker. I have had very less sleeping hours all this week, and my heart calls heavily for the Friday. I know the weekend just passed and it is only Wednesday. Slept around 3 AM the last night, after all shopping mania for my friend's brand new home set up. I swear it takes tons of patience and willingness to get on to this effort. It is like one of the nasty project, which has no requirement documents or pointers. The dead line will be well defined and fast approaching. I remember screaming at him (my friend) every time my head aches or leg pains.

I know I set up the alarm deliberately every night for a wakeup call. I remember it ringing for some 10 times today morning before I could find out the silly piece and switch it off. Checked the time and it way more late than I could imagine. It was around 9:20 AM, and I had just had some 20 mts to get ready. The day @ office was more horrible than any. I could barely keep my eyes open for long. I am stuck in a meeting now – can hardly make out what is getting discussed. I am trying to catch every word that is been spoken. Suddenly experiencing the odd feeling of letters flying all around me. It was just like the “Tare Zameen Par” movie experience. It is raining outside heavily and my crazy imagination rings – what if the buildings have no roof. I am sure everyone is gonna run and hide themselves. But I am not moving away, will stretch my hands to hug the lovely gift of nature.

Something distracted me, and the first thing to check was if I have a wet laptop. Good heavens! – it was not the real rain. And now there is some question raised in the call that is posted to me –“ So Viji is that how the functionality is expected to work??” – One of those embarrassing moments which I face most of the times, still with no signs of shame I asked – “I could not exactly catch your question – can you come again please?”. Typical effects of day dreaming. By the time the call ended, just rushed to the window to check if it is still pouring. The rained has calmed down for a while and people are rushing home. Another check on the time – it is 5:10 PM. The launch down stairs was all wet and the dark sky still gives me hopes of more rain. Wrapping up for the day with a good bye note to the ‘Christmas Santa’ on my desk – “Thy shall see me tomorrow”.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

The White Christmas

The season is almost fading away when I am making a genuine effort to scribble. "Winter" - the most handsome season of the year. Love to see the winters. As folks say most unusual for a person like me, raised in a tropical country and one of the most humid states where the word winter is just confined to books. This may be the reason why I have a strong desire for the season.

It snows very less in Charlotte compared to most of the other places in US. The Last Christmas day (2010) was a prime one, as it was welcomed with snow. The city looked awesome covered in white bed. I could map it to the traces of heaven I see in my dreams. The moment it showered, I was at one of the townships near my place with my friend. The place looked awesome with all the Christmas decors. The huge Christmas tree, the Santa with his chariot, the rein deers, it was nothing less than a perfect Christmas town. The folks around were decked up in their best winter attires.

Starbucks seemed to be the most happening eat outs that moment as it can be none other than a coffee which can serve you the best in the cold. Starbucks treated us with classic taste of their brewed coffee. Most of the shops and boutiques in the street were closed as it was a holiday. How I wished they were open and I could grab some of the best outfits that were displayed. Every time I get these temptations - they are tagged by the scenes of the movie "Confessions of a Shopaholic". A walk around the street in the cold breeze was refreshing. I wrapped myself two fold inside my coat.

The chillness was not an annoyance when it came to the snow fight. I showed up more to the receiving end irrespective of my sincere efforts to attack my friend. The residents would have been the most pleased to see their car tops being cleaned up. I remember making a small snow man on the table top, which barely looked like one. We drove through the residential area near the place. There were those amazing houses which had lake front. Reminded me those pretty castles in the Disney Movies. We saved some clicks to remember the beautiful Christmas. The day was completed with an awesome Indian dinner, wrapped by with an Italian Tiramisu.

It was definitely one of the memorable days of my life and a million thanks to my friend for making it happen.